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Thursday, 12 June
Man Alive!

I've been seeing ads recently for a new cable channel coming soon called "Spike." It bills itself as a "channel for men," which I think is fucking peachy: we men have been fucked out of decent programming for years, haven't we? I mean, there you are, trying to watch a baseball game, and then all of a sudden, "We now take our viewers to 'Murder, She Wrote,' already in progress." It happens all the time. We guys can't catch a damn break when it comes to TV programming.

It's kind of icky to me, this new resurgence of what I more or less lazily call the Maxim effect: it's perfectly okay to be a dumbass pig as long as you wink hard enough while you do it. Sure, I'm a shallow creep, but it's okay, because I'm acknowledging that I'm a shallow creep! (I know I'm using a wide-ass brush here, and that all guys who take a look at Maxim or whatever aren't all assholes, but I'm talking epiphenomena here, or whatever ten-cent word actually belongs at the end of that phrase.)

Seeming to take its cues from horrible tripe like The Man Show, which more honestly would be called The Idiot Man-Child Show, it looks certain to jump up and down on familiar guy themes: tits, sports, drinking, and farting. Now, as a man, I happen to like at least three of those things, and am ambivalent about the fourth--does the world need more butt-humor?--but it's pretty thin gruel as any kind of regular diet. And for this we needed a whole channel? Right; up until now, men have been frozen out of modern programming altogether. All that Buffy-watching made our chest hair fall out.

Weirdly, one show they are heavily promoting is an animated comedy--something else the world was certainly crying out for more of--featuring that paragon of manliness . . . Kelsey Grammer. Yes, Kelsey Grammer, who rose to stardom playing a pretentious, prissy, bumbling windbaguette of a man; an actor who seemingly defines "mid-life crisis" as a condition that begins at age 29 and ends at death; a C-list talent who consistently proved himself outshone by the comic lights of people such as Woody Harrelson. Also, he perpetrated the Geneva Convention-violating Down Periscope, for which he of course will burn like a Salem midwife. This is their heavy hitter?

I might be worrying over nothing.


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Comments

And now Spike Lee thinks they named the network after him and is suing them to stop it!

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=529&ncid=529&e=4&u=/ap/20030612/ap_en_tv/tv_spike_tv

Is he kidding? Spike barely qualifies as a real man anyway.

Comment number: 000955   Posted by: MojoMark on June 12, 2003 10:50 PM from IP: 209.162.200.94

Yeah, but he *was* Sideshow Bob - c'mon!

Comment number: 000958   Posted by: Rory on June 13, 2003 03:33 AM from IP: 194.81.244.110

(Kelsey Grammar, I mean. Although Spike Lee as Sideshow Bob would have been something.)

Comment number: 000959   Posted by: Rory on June 13, 2003 03:34 AM from IP: 194.81.244.110

Hi, I just wanted to say that I liked the way you write and I don't think that men need there own network when they have crap like "the man show". It sounds as if this network is going to be basically soft porn but I don't know any details so don't quote me on that. See yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!

Comment number: 000960   Posted by: tigerss on June 13, 2003 06:56 AM from IP: 199.92.127.66


Sounds like it'll be a channel full of crap that makes men look bad. More ammunition for the men-haters. The Lifetime Channel is already full of programming that makes men look bad.

Comment number: 000961   Posted by: i on June 13, 2003 07:22 AM from IP: 141.156.214.5

More ammunition for the man-haters? Sweet! There's nothing sexier than a chick with a gun.

Comment number: 000962   Posted by: Pig on June 13, 2003 07:36 AM from IP: 198.151.13.8

Personally, I think Spike the Dog from Looney Tunes and the estate of Spike Jones should sue Spike Lee.

And all I'VE yet to see on this new Spike TV thingie is "American Gladiators." Now there's some TV-watchin'!!

Comment number: 000963   Posted by: Bet on June 13, 2003 08:14 AM from IP: 12.34.246.35

What blows my mind is the fact that another of their animated shows stars...Pamela Anderson. What the hell is the point of Pamela Anderson as a VOICE ACTOR?

Still, just so long as they don't stop showing "Star Trek: the Next Generation" ad nauseum they can call the network any damn thing they want.

Comment number: 000964   Posted by: Jellybean on June 13, 2003 09:37 AM from IP: 146.129.16.119

"...wind baguette"

Laughed. My. Ass. Off.

oh my, my, my, my.

Comment number: 000967   Posted by: moose on June 13, 2003 01:38 PM from IP: 63.227.130.7

I just watch it for the docudramas.

Comment number: 000969   Posted by: beerick on June 13, 2003 04:02 PM from IP: 208.252.86.5

Ok, I just have to say that as long as they're not showing ST:TNG and RealTV 24/7 like they are now (or worse, going back to The Nashville Network), I'm just fine with them switching to re-runs of the A-Team.

Comment number: 000970   Posted by: Ryan Waddell on June 13, 2003 04:27 PM from IP: 65.49.78.17

is this not aso to be the home of all-new Ren and Stimpy episodes?

Surely that counts for something.

Comment number: 000971   Posted by: mike on June 13, 2003 04:30 PM from IP: 216.173.212.237

I am a woman, and I will most likely spend a large portion of my TV viewing time watching this new Spike network. I will, however, skip anything showing Kelsey Grammer. It is mostly the sick lure of the new Ren and Stimpy's that is so inviting, which promises a phenomenal regurgitation of boogers, farts and all things crusty. I know I'm excited.

Comment number: 000975   Posted by: Kari-Ann on June 14, 2003 08:52 PM from IP: 69.21.24.200

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